Sunsets and Stargazing in Ilocos Norte

Sometimes trips don’t always go as planned. A cancelled boat trip meant time to kill, and I unexpectedly found myself shooting a serene sunset and stargazing in Ilocos Norte. While waiting for a boat to Calayan in Cagayan during our trip last April, we exhausted the tourist spots in the jump-off point Claveria, got wasted on Red Horse Beer, and even got to go sightseeing around beaches and waterfalls in Pagudpud. Our last two stops were to the towns of Burgos and Bangui in Ilocos Norte for some sunset/night photography.

Things have changed in Kapurpurawan Rock Formation in Burgos from my last visit. Visitors are no longer allowed to climb and step on the rocks. The main ark-shaped formation is now cordoned off with rope to prevent vandals from scribbling their names on the powdery white surface and eager tourists from treading too heavily on it with their jump shots. In place is a cemented path leading to a view deck from where visitors can take photos. For those who don’t want to walk, horseback rides are offered there as well. Despite the changes, I still found Kapurpurawan as alien and otherworldly as when I first saw it. In the light of the golden hour, the rock formations seemed to glow with etched lines sticking out like veins on its surface. The setting sun bathed the rest of the rocky terrain and hills with a hazy and warm blanket.

The impromptu trip to Ilocos Norte was also my first time to see the Bangui Windmills up close. The wind farm contains a row of 70-meter (230 ft) high wind turbines, stretching along a nine-kilometer shoreline off Bangui Bay, facing the South China Sea. While at first I was disappointed that we didn’t get to see the place during the day, under the bright moonlight and clear blue night sky, the windmills looked almost dreamlike. Shooting was a bit of a challenge since I never bring a tripod and don’t have the right filters (not to mention, no remote shutter or intervalometer, whatever the heck those are), but I happen to like the flaws and blurry details of the photos. Looking up at the towering windmills was quite a surreal experience. It was a pleasantly surprising side-trip. Here are a few snapshots from that night.

LakadPilipinas goes off into the sunset

Brambles lining the walkway

BlissfulGuro Carla at Bangui Windmills

Juanderful Pinoy Chino at Bangui Windmills

A light painting for someone who I wish could have shared the experience

Self-portrait taken on timer mode

11 thoughts on “Sunsets and Stargazing in Ilocos Norte

  1. I like all the photos!! But, I like the 1st the 3rd pics the most.. Where are these taken from is it also along Bangui windmills? Thanks!

    • Thanks Nique 🙂 Nope, these are 2 separate locations. The sunset pics were taken in Kapurpurawan Rock Formation in the town of Burgos. The windfarm by Bangui Bay is about 30-40 mins away.

  2. Pingback: Rizal Wind Farm Loop Ride | Travel Up

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